2018 marked the launch of St Patrick’s Mental Health Services’ new five-year strategic plan, Changing Minds. Changing Lives. The first 12 months of the strategy saw significant changes being made across the organisation as we began to implement its many objectives. The strategy recognises the unique role that St Patrick’s Mental Health Services (SPMHS) plays in the delivery of mental health care in Ireland and seeks to future-proof that service.
Embedding Quality Service
SPMHS is governed through a charitable trust, set out by a Charter established in 1746. These distinctive origins translate to our present-day status as an independent, not-for-profit entity, one which is not in receipt of Government funding. This status gives a unique perspective on our work, and our goal is to continually strive to enhance and improve our organisation by reinvesting in our staff, facilities and services.
Our consistently high compliance ratings from the Mental Health Commission serve to illustrate the quality of our service and the calibre of the care our service users receive.
Reaching High Standards of Governance
SPMHS is independently governed by a Board of Governors, comprised of 12 non-executive, voluntary members who receive no remuneration for their services. The Board is charged with the responsibility of administering the charitable trust on a not-for-profit basis. The Board, its five sub-committees, and management invest considerable time to ensure that we maintain our high standards of corporate governance.
During 2018, the Board met ten times. The day-to-day management of the organisation is delegated to our executive management team, led by the Chief Executive Officer.
Each month, the Board appoints one of its members as a Visiting Governor, who is charged with visiting a specific area or service, and reports to the Board at the next meeting. During 2018, a service user representative also attended a meeting of the Board on a quarterly basis, and members of staff were invited to present various issues and topics to the Board.
Acknowledging the Invaluable Contribution of Governors
I would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge the invaluable role played by the Governors of SPMHS in 2018, including Mrs. Caroline Preston (who stepped down in 2018 after making a significant contribution of eight years as Chairman), Mr. Conor Killeen (resigned June 2018), Mrs. Bernadette Godley, Dr. John Hillery, Mrs. Caroline Gill, Professor Joyce O’Connor, Mrs. Audrey Cunningham, Mr. Geoff Scully, Mr. Michael Moriarty, Mr. Marcus Beresford (resigned August 2018), the Very Reverend William Wright Morton, the Most Reverend Doctor Richard Clarke and the Most Reverend Doctor Michael Jackson.
This is an opportunity to extend my gratitude for the hard work and diligence of our dedicated staff and volunteers, as well as the commitment of our strong management team and Board of Governors.